Joy Kim

Librarian. Book Reviewer. Coffee Addict.

Hagaren miscellany

Via umadoshi: Jake Forbes on the joys of the Fullmetal Alchemist manga. An excerpt:

Any anime fan who’s followed the scene for the last five years is probably quite familiar with this ongoing tale of angst and alchemy, but if you’ve only experienced Fullmetal in its animated form, you’re really missing out. The manga, still going strong in Japan and the US (courtesy of Viz), diverged from the anime back in volume 9.

To which I say: Hear, hear! There hasn’t been much buzz about this series since the anime completed its US release, but it continues to be one of the best manga series available in the states. As Forbes notes, the pacing particularly sets it apart from other popular shonen series, where not much can happen for volumes at a time. I may have an incurable weakness for lengthy Shonen Jump series like Naruto and Bleach, but I freely admit that their pacing issues are often dire.

Perhaps the new Hagaren1 anime series in the works will lead to renewed interest in the manga. I confess to being quite curious about what BONES will do with the sequel series. The anime tv series and movie diverge so drastically from the original manga source that I can’t see the anime going back to the manga storyline; any new anime series will probably have a wholly original arc.

What manga series do you feel are underappreciated?

1 Hagaren, like Furuba for Fruits Basket, is an abbreviation for the full Japanese name of the series, Hagane no Renkinjutsushi.

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